The boss of packaging firm Dundee Flexibles insists business is heading “in the right direction” despite the challenges faced since taking the helm.
Jimmy Urquhart bought Discovery Flexibles in 2019 when it was teetering on the brink of administration.
Since then, he has had challenges of Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic to negotiate, but believes the business is on the right track.
Mr Uruqhart said: “Since taking over the company with losses of £1.4 million and a business close to the brink of collapse, we have made consistent growing profits every single month and year since.
“2019 was essentially a break-even year but at least it stabilised us and gave everyone confidence that we could save this business.
“In 2020, I am really happy to report a profit of £240,000 even with turnover reduced by about £500,000 due to the pandemic.”
Firm’s turnover down but profits up
Newly filed accounts for the year to December 2020 show turnover down to £11.3m from £11.8m in 2019.
Discovery Flexibles reported a pre-tax profit hike of £240,000 – up from £9,000 the year previous.
Mr Uruqhart said: “I’m really happy with the progress we are making. It’s all heading in the right direction.
“It’s why I took the business on in the first place. I knew it could perform better than it has done over the last decade or so.
“While turnover has dropped by around half a million in 2020 our profits have improved.
“That is thanks to the internal efforts of the team working on cost saving initiatives, waste reduction and efficiency improvements.”
Mr Uruqhart said the drop in turnover is not linked to any loss of business.
Rather it was caused by reduced demand due to Covid.
He added: “Luckily we have a wide spread of the flexibles market so whilst some were down, others were booming.
“We saw a reduction in ranges with focus on key lines which is the path that most seemed to take to get through the pandemic.”
Boss praises Discovery Flexibles staff
The firm also made an investment of almost £150,000 which allowed for an increase capacity in slitting.
The headcount remained at 70 for the reporting period, with 66 workers in production and four administration and support roles.
Mr Urquhart praised staff for their contributions.
“Hats off to every single person in this business for the job they do,” he said.
“What makes the turnaround all the more amazing is that we managed to do all of this with strong headwinds.”